Outdoor summer nightlife in Britain

As the sun goes down, Britain bursts with energy. Look beyond its vibrant nightlife and bustling evening streets to discover a world of kayaking by moonlight, beach film screenings and illuminating festivals.

Find delicious delights at food markets, or dance the night away in iconic locations. For a thrill, embrace the supernatural on an evening ghost tour, or get your cultural fix with twilight artistic performances. As we get set to welcome the official start of summer on 21 June, head out into Britain to see where the night takes you…

Tuck into grub at a night market

Dive into an urban food market at Escape to Freight Island in Manchester. Think fiery foods, frozen cocktails and entertainment to leave you partying into the night. Take your dining experience to new levels with pop-up events throughout the year, including Katina, which welcomes top chefs to the city’s buzzing foodie scene in June.

Or get a taste for Birmingham’s street food at Hockey Social Club – expect dirty loaded fries and sticky chicken wings, all a short walk from the city’s Jewellery Quarter. Grab an evening nibble from Thursday to Saturday, and boogie along to live music every Friday.

Escape to Freight Island

Get spooky after dark

As darkness falls, the ghosts come out to play in Edinburgh. For a mysterious experience to get your heart racing, try the Fright Night Tour – hear tales of witchcraft and body snatchers, and venture underground into the city’s spooky vaults. If ghost hunting is more your thing, head through Edinburgh’s streets and haunted cemetery on the Extreme Paranormal Ghost Tour. But be warned, these tales of ghouls are not for the faint-hearted!

City of Edinburgh Tours

Head out onto the water

Night kayak across London with Secret Adventures, London, England. Kayakers on River Thames. Big Ben in background.

Enjoy a different perspective of London’s iconic sights on a night time kayak with Secret Adventures. As dusk falls, grab a paddle and float along the River Thames to see the city come alive with twinkling lights. Pass by the Houses of Parliament, spot St Paul’s Cathedral and venture up towards the grandeur of Tower Bridge as you experience the capital from a new angle.

Secret Adventures

Catch an evening film

From classic movie screenings on a beach, to indie film in secret locations, Britain is full of unexpected cinema moments. Sit back and relax in a deck chair while enjoying stunning views of London’s skyline at London Rooftop Film Club. Located in Peckham and Stratford, this social cinematic experience is one not to be missed. For a unique setting, try The Luna Beach Cinema on Brighton beach. As the waves lap the shoreline, tuck into food from on-site venders while enjoying everything from cult classics to box office hits.

Movie buffs can find outdoor cinematic experiences all over Britain with The Luna Cinema. Take in a screening from within historic walls of Cardiff Castle, or view a flick in the shadow of the iconic Westminster Abbey – there’s plenty of opportunities to catch a movie under the stars this summer.

Rooftop Film Club

Pump up the party

Pick up the pace and the party with a pedal-powered tour on a Beer Bike. Cruise past London’s iconic landmarks as you embark on a liquid fuelled journey round the city’s streets. Whether you’re part of a big group looking for a unique adventure or you’re just looking for a seat at the table – A Wee Toast Tour has got you covered.

Take the party one step further and head onto the Thames for a silent disco under the city’s glistening evening glow. From pop party classics to electric bangers, dance ‘til dusk on a Silent Sounds boat tour that brings a unique dancing disco to London. Or for a scenic party, hit up the rooftop at Birmingham’s The Mill – their jam-packed agenda has something for everyone.

Wee Toast Tours

See the stars

As the summer comes to an end, grab a nature fix while taking in a twinkling cosmic display at a Dark Skies Festival. Head to Exmoor National Park from 13-30 October for a weeklong spot of stargazing, including a feast of local produce under the stars and guided tours after dark. Or venture to the North York Moors and Yorkshire Dales for their annual Dark Skies Fringe Festival from 21-30 October – try your hand at astrophotography, join a night walk, and look up to the sparkly skies above. If you’re looking for an adventure, take to the waters of Anglesey, North Wales. Psyched Paddleboarding offer magical stand-up paddleboard trips, led by moonlight, starry skies and head torches.

Exmoor National Park

Festivals after dark

Look beyond Edinburgh Festival Fringe's daytime extravaganza of comedy shows, theatrical performances and musical concerts for a whole bunch of evening cultural activities. For three weeks in August, see the city’s streets awash with street performers, exhibitions and entertainment that’ll leave you amused into the late hours.

For an autumnal night-time adventure, Liverpool glows with colour each year as part of the River of Light festival. Shining bright along Liverpool’s historic docklands from 21 October to 6 November, expect everything from dazzling interactive displays to glowing sculptures and a sonic runway of rainbow lights.

20 May 2022(last updated)

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